Growth curves of Nellore cattle were analyzed using body weights measured at ages ranging from 1 day (birth weight) to 733 days. Traits considered were birth weight, 10 to 110 days weight, 102 to 202 days weight, 193 to 293 days weight, 283 to 383 days weight, 376 to 476 days weight, 551 to 651 days weight, and 633 to 733 days weight. Two data samples were created: one with 79,849 records from herds that had missing traits and another with 74,601 from herds with no missing traits. Records preadjusted to a fixed age were analyzed by a multiple trait model (MTM), which included the effects of contemporary group, age of dam class, additive direct, additive maternal, and maternal permanent environment. Analyses were carried out by a Bayesian method for all nine traits. The random regression model (RRM) included the effects of age of animal, contemporary group, age of dam class, additive direct, permanent environment, additive maternal, and maternal permanent environment. Legendre cubic polynomials were used to describe random effects. MTM estimated covariance components and genetic parameters for birth weight and sequential weights and RRM for all ages. Due to the fact that covariance components based on RRM were inflated for herds with missing traits, MTM should be used and converted to covariance functions.
beef cattle; multiple trait; random regression